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BAM! The Future of Rock N Roll (is online only)

Champaign, IL to Dayton, OH

Champaign, IL to Dayton, OH

Before we got married, in the late 90s my wife lived for two years in Dayton, OH. I would drive four hours across Indiana from my Champaign, IL home to see her. I knew that I had exited the radio desert of the Hoosier State when I could just barely tune in WOXY out of the Ohio college town of Oxford. By any measure WOXY was a unique commercial station, made all the more remarkable for being located outside of a major metroplex, though its signal reached into both the greater Cincinnati and Dayton areas.

WOXY logo from its broadcast days

WOXY logo from its broadcast days

WOXY‘s tag line–then as now–was “the future of Rock N Roll,” playing what we’d call an alternative rock format, but marked by greater variety and less repetition than even other major alternative stations in other cities. Sometimes I’d visit on a Friday when my wife was still at work and I’d move the radio antenna all around her suburban Kettering apartment in order to keep pulling WOXY’s refreshing signal while I’d read and keep myself occupied.

After my wife moved away from Dayton we’d still tune in WOXY’s internet stream to get a different take on alternative rock, even though Champaign has a pretty good radio dial for a small Central Illinois city.

However, in 2004 WOXY’S owners sold their broadcast station–for about 14 times what they paid for it–and went online only. Since then the online WOXY has changed hands and recently announced a move to Austin, TX. But the station successfully soldiers on, continuing to serve up the kind of indie rock unheard on broadcast commercial radio. As a result it’s arguably one of the premiere indie rock stations on the interwebs.

A new short (9 minute) documentary by Zachary Herche explores WOXY’s broadcast to webcast history (via Pop Candy). In it you’ll learn how WOXY gained pre-internet national fame by being prominently featured in a popular 1988 movie starring Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman.

WOXY DOC from Zachary Herche on Vimeo.

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